The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Thursday, November 30, 2023

Israel at War—Deep Fakes

It should come as no surprise that Hamas and its hundreds of thousands (millions?) of palestinian supporters are really good at four things:

  1. committing and celebrating human atrocities and then acting the victim when those who have been attacked retaliate with violence;
  2. distorting irrefutable facts and proven history to such an extent that they have no resemblance whatsoever to reality;
  3. lying shamelessly as they roll out propaganda that grossly overstates their own casualties while at the same time creating fake images and video to depict their "plight" under conditions of war.
  4. playing the perpetual victim (80 years and counting) so that they receive billions in humanitarian aid from Western governments and additional billions from charitable groups who are often duped into donating funds that flow directly to terror groups.

The AP (certainly no friend of Israel) reports on the palestinians efforts to enhance item #3 (above) with their latest high-tech efforts at propaganda:

WASHINGTON (AP) — Among images of the bombed out homes and ravaged streets of Gaza, some stood out for the utter horror: Bloodied, abandoned infants.

Viewed millions of times online since the war began, these images are deepfakes created using artificial intelligence. If you look closely you can see clues: fingers that curl oddly, or eyes that shimmer with an unnatural light — all telltale signs of digital deception.

The outrage the images were created to provoke, however, is all too real.

Pictures from the Israel-Hamas war have vividly and painfully illustrated AI’s potential as a propaganda tool, used to create lifelike images of carnage. Since the war began last month, digitally altered ones spread on social media have been used to make false claims about responsibility for casualties or to deceive people about atrocities that never happened.

While most of the false claims circulating online about the war didn’t require AI to create and came from more conventional sources, technological advances are coming with increasing frequency and little oversight. That’s made the potential of AI to become another form of weapon starkly apparent, and offered a glimpse of what’s to come during future conflicts, elections and other big events.

You'll note something interesting. Not once in their report does the AP mention that these deep fakes have been produced by the palestinians, NOT Israel. After all, the propaganda media (AP is a ranking member) promote the narrative that the palestinians are the innocent, aggrieved party and that the wrenching images (many are likely faked) produced are "evidence" of "human rights abuses" by Israel. 

Then again, if you distort history, make wildly false claims of victimhood, and lie shamelessly about ... well ... almost everything, it's a small step indeed toward A.I. deep fakes.

The well-worn phrase, "Who are you going to believe, me or your lying eyes?" might have to be revised. If the palestinians ask that question, the appropriate answer is NEITHER.


Item # 4 in the body of this post is the profit center for the palestinians. In an extremely detailed report (the whole thing is worth a read), Sam Westrop states:

Recent analysis published by Israeli analysts place Hamas’s annual budget in Gaza at between $2 and $3 billion. At least an estimated $500 million of this is provided by the “Hamas Charity Coalition” and various investment entities. New sanctions imposed by U.S. Department of the Treasury are based on similar conclusions, and target a range of charities and companies.

One named entity in the U.S. government document is the “Gaza-based and [Palestinian Islamic Jihad]-affiliated Al-Ansar Charity Association (Al-Ansar),” which “provides millions of dollars … for the families of terrorists affiliated with Hamas and PIJ. Al-Ansar claims to provide funds to families affiliated with these terrorist groups as an extension of Iranian support to the Palestinian people, but the funding ultimately serves as a recruiting tool for terrorist activities.”

Indeed, radical movements have long used charitable programs and promises of social welfare to build a base of support and help with recruitment. Crucially, as the U.S. government realizes, charities do not have to fund Hamas’s terrorist operations directly to benefit the terrorist organization financially or ideologically.

Across the Islamist world, in fact, Hamas, the Muslim BrotherhoodKhomeinists,   WahhabisISIS, and al-Qaeda and, indeed, Islamist groups all around the world, have made use of charitable programs to expand and consolidate control over Muslim communities. Hamas and other terror groups refer to this approach as da’wa. The term is usually employed to mean a proselytizing call to Islam, but in the case of Islamist movements and its terror offshoots such as Hamas, it serves as a call to Islamism – and thus a vehicle to impose Islamist rule. Counter-terrorism experts and an increasing number of governments note that the use of da’wah through charity facilitates an influx of largely-unchecked foreign funds, helps to recruit to new members, frees up money for violent operations, and serves to sanitize the reputation of terror movements.

The Islamic world often looks the other way as da'wa funds are used in a way that allows Islamist terror groups to fund weapons purchases and other terror-related activities. Islam is complicit in this and needs to be called out. But no one goes there because ... Islamophobia.


Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Israel at War—Iran, Part 3

In the first of two "Israel at War" posts on Iran (here and here), I related a family event that happened 44 years ago. I repeat it here:

I was at a family get-together in very early February, 1979, hosted by my late Aunt, a wonderful woman who also was an unreconstructed liberal in the old-school sense of the word. On that day, the Islamist Ayatollah Khomeni, was en route from France to Iran. His plane was in the air as our family gathered.

Like virtually all liberals at that time, my aunt was thrilled with the ascension of Khomeni, glad that the "evil dictator" Shah of Iran had been overthrown to be replaced by an Islamist government headed by the Ayatollah.

During a discussion on the Middle East, my Aunt asked me what I thought of the situation in Iran and of Khomeni.

I smiled, and then said, "Shoot the plane down."

Aghast, my aunt frowned and made the argument that "Iranians and the world" would be much better off under the vaunted Ayatollah, a man of peace. Liberals and the American media treated Khomeni as a hero and a savior of the Iranian people.

History provides an unequivocal answer as to whether I or my aunt was correct.

In my first post, I characterized Iran this way:

... a repressive, Islamist dictatorship (like many Muslim countries, unfortunately) that imprisons dissidents and represses its people. As a hegemon in the ME, it supports (with money and arms) Islamist terror groups like Hamas and Hezballah, who it uses as 'cat's paws' to attack Israel. It has repeatedly called for the annihilation of the Jewish state, the murder of Jews, and the defeat of the Great Satan, the USA. It is a cancer in world affairs. 

And in my second post, I wrote:

The best case result for the West is the destruction of the current ruling dictatorship within Iran. That's easy to say, but extremely difficult, even though, unlike the palestinians in Gaza who support Hamas in significant numbers, a substantial percentage of the Iranian people have shown signs for years that they hate the regime and want it gone. Barack Obama had a golden opportunity to help them during the Green revolution in 2009, but threw it away—one of many of his foreign policy disasters.

Along with many professional geopolitical analysts, I believed that Iran had their puppet, Hamas, commit its atrocities to submarine the Trump-initiated accords (resurrected after three years by the Biden administration) between Saudi Arabia and Israel. I still think that's true.

But Reuel Marc Gerecht and Ray Takeyh suggest another reason that may have had as much to do with the Hamas barbarism as its potential for geopolitical impact. They suggest that:

... a fundamental motivation of Iran’s theocracy [is] anti-Semitism. At least three generations of radical Iranian clerics have viewed Israel as illegitimate, usurping sacred Islamic lands in the name of a pernicious ideology advanced by history’s most devilish and stubborn people. Using the language of French Marxism, they call Israel a Western “colonial-settler state,” and they believe Jews guide American imperialism in the Middle East. In this struggle between good and evil, Muslims have a religious obligation to resist Israel and global Jewry.

The founder of the revolution, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, set the standard for the Islamic Republic of Iran. In his book “Islamic Government,” he wrote, “From the very beginning, the historical movement of Islam had to contend with the Jews, for it was they who first established anti-Islamic propaganda and engaged in various stratagems, and as you can see, this activity continues down to the present.” He depicted Jews as distorters of the Quran, financial hoarders, and agents of the West.

Khomeini’s anti-Semitic themes were picked up by his two most important disciples, former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, the “pragmatic” cleric par excellence, and the current supreme leader, Ali Khamenei. Rafsanjani published a book, “Israel and Beloved Jerusalem,” claiming that resistance to the Jewish state was the sacred duty of “every Muslim and anyone who believes in God.” Judaism for Rafsanjani was irretrievably “immersed in colonialism” and “Zionism is the essential partner of global arrogance [America].” Messrs. Rafsanjani and Khamenei green-lighted the bombing of a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires in 1994, which left 85 dead and 300 wounded.

It's interesting that the current leftist meme that calls Israel a “colonial-settler state” (an absurd characterization that is historically false), was derived from Marxist ideology. Maybe that's why Western leftists have been driven into hysteria over the current Hamas-Israel war, have dropped all pretense of being "anti-Zionist," and evolved into pure-bred anti-Semites.

But leftist protesters, as obnoxious and loud as they are, along with their many supporters in the propaganda media, are not the biggest enablers of Iran's dangerous theocracy. Western left-wing leaders and politicians come first. Gerecht and Takeyh write:

Western statesmen and journalists have often seen the Iranian theocracy’s anti-Semitism as anti-Zionism, something turned on and off for Arab audiences by more sophisticated Persians. Many have consistently tried to isolate the regime’s anti-Semitism to a group of Iranian “hardliners”—even though these same men have always held power. Obviously it is easier for Barack Obama and Joe Biden to envision their nuclear diplomacy with Tehran as stabilizing and possibly transformative when Iran’s rulers aren’t seen as diehard, lethal anti-Semites. Imagine, however, if the Islamic Republic’s anti-Semitism were transmuted into a murderous creed targeting non-Jewish Americans? Would these presidents have been so keen to give billions in sanctions relief and seek a new modus vivendi with the U.S.? 

Shockingly, I suspect that the answer might be "yes." Barack Obama, a politician who is idolized by the modern American Left, was among the first to have the hubris to believe that a repressive, Islamist dictatorship driven by a core of anti-Semitic sentiment could be dealt with using diplomacy. His foolhardy efforts to appease the Mullahs showed a degree of moral decay (and dare I say it, overt anti-Israel sentiment) that exists to this day.

The hard men of Iran must be dealt with—not with diplomacy, but with violence, delivered preferably by their own beleaguered people or by an outside actor. There was a time when I though the West might use Israel as their 'cats paw' in delivering violence to Iran. But the West has devolved into a weak and corrupt actor on the world stage—one that gladly allows evil to exist and flourish, as long as succor is provided to those who it deems "oppressed" and in need of "humanitarian aid."

Iran's Mullahs smile, surprised by the utter naivete and weakness they see, and don't change a thing in their inexorable march toward a world that is dominated by radical Islam. 

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Israel at War—The Dems Wobble

To their credit, it took the Democrats almost two months before they allowed their latent pro-palestinian sympathies to overcome their concern about losing their many, many Jewish supporters. But as many Jewish progressives move Right because they are fed up with the blatant anti-Israel bias of the Dems' trained hamsters in the propaganda media, the vicious Jew hatred spawned by woke academia, and the anti-Semitic language espoused by the Rashia Tlaib wing of the party, Democratic leaders may no longer care.

The Wall Street Journal reports:

Israel agreed on Monday to a two-day extension of its truce with Hamas to gain the release of more hostages, a priority of President Biden. But another idea is gaining ground among Democrats that is more dangerous: condition U.S. aid on how Israel conducts its war of self-preservation.

The stipulation is said to be merely that Israel follow international law. But since Israel does follow international law, and the U.S. already can withhold foreign assistance on human-rights grounds, the condition is unnecessary—but not harmless. During wartime, it would signal to Israel’s enemies that the U.S. has gone wobbly on the campaign to destroy Hamas.

Sen. Chris Murphy (D., Conn.), chairman of the Foreign Relations subcommittee on the Middle East, made positive noises about the idea Sunday. “We regularly condition our aid to allies based upon compliance with U.S. law and international law,” he said, adding, “I think that you can defeat Hamas without this level of civilian casualty,” which he calls “unacceptable.”

Asked on Friday, President Biden said conditioning aid is “a worthwhile thought,” but “I don’t think if I started off with that, we’d ever gotten to where we are today. We have to take this a piece at a time.” Asked twice to clarify, national security adviser Jake Sullivan wouldn’t rule out the idea.

Not for the first time, Democrats are following Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.), who called for the condition on Thursday. “We cannot be complicit in actions that violate international law,” he wrote. “That includes an end to indiscriminate bombing.” Mr. Sanders is responding to the increasingly loud street protests against Israel by the Democratic left.

Here's a comment I made in the WSJ:

Democrats tell us repeatedly that they care so, so much about human rights and international law. They're happy to place "conditions" on Israel, but why is it that they aren't DEMANDING that Hamas release ALL hostages taken on October 7th right now. Using hostages as human shields is an outright violation of international law, so that demand should be easy to make.

And while they're at, the Democrats might focus some of their "moral outrage" on Islamic leaders, who have done virtually nothing to eliminate or at least rein in Islamist terror groups like Hamas, ISIS, al Qaida, Hezballah, the Taliban, and Boko Haram—all spawned out of Islam.

But doing the latter would alienate the Rashida Tlaib/Ilhan Omar wing of the party—can't have that. So instead, they feed the anti-Israel hate lust of many on the Left, and move ever closer to putting all of Israel in harm's way.

Oh wait ... Israel, a tiny democracy of less than 9 million people, is already in harm's way because Islam can't countenance the presence of the infidel in the Arab Crescent.

Maybe Bernie Sanders might suggest that since Hamas is in clear violation of International Law, all aid to Gaza—every U.S. dollar—should be cut off—immediately!

Nah, Bernie only pontificates about Israel—a country he seems to truly despise. He and far too many Democrats live in a Marxist world where the "oppressor" and the "oppressed" have no connection to reality and are defined by fools like the Senator.

Monday, November 27, 2023

Israel at War—The Hostage Deal, Consequences

The leftist supporters of the anti-Israel/anit-Semitic movement are guilty of fantasy thinking 24-7. Like all leftists, they construct a world—history, facts, statistics, and opinion—that doesn't exist but supports their fantasy narratives. They gladly embrace blatant lies when those lies serve their narratives, and enthusiastically construct new lies that will serve their needs going forward. The reality of the Left is fantasy.

But all of us, including yours truly, are guilty of fantasy thinking every so often. For me, it sometimes happens when I see what I think are bad decisions that are made with good intentions. I hope against hope that I'm wrong in my assessment of the decisions, and that things will work out in the end. But deep down, I know the decision is the wrong one, even if it was made for the right reasons.

That's what happened when Israel agreed to the terms of the on-going release of kidnapped men, women, children and seniors by the Hamas terrorists. Those same barbarians abducted 240+ souls, and murdered, raped, and mutiated over 1200 more Israelis. 

I knew Israeli officials agreed to terms that wholly favored Hamas for the right reasons—to get some of the abducted people home. But by every logical measure, I recognized that by agreeing to those terms, Israel put itself at a tactical and strategic disadvantage that could, if not carefully navigated, lead to a disastrous outcome in which Hamas survives and prospers, the palestinians in Gaza remain a parasitic blight on the region, and israel gains absolutely nothing but the global opproprium that always occurs when the tiny democratic state responds to terrorist attacks.

Alex Berenson contends that agreeing to the terms of the hostage release is a grave mistake on the part of Israeli leadership:

It is impossible to overstate how bad this deal is. The ceasefire - whether it lasts four days, 11, or much longer - is a disaster for Israel on every level.

Symbolically: By agreeing to a hostages-for-prisoners swap, Israel has implicitly agreed the Palestinian criminals in its prisons are no different than the civilians that Hamas’s terrorists grabbed from their beds and homes on Oct. 7.

Militarily/Tactically: The pause gives Hamas’s fighters a chance to rest after weeks of bombardment, rebuild their defenses, and rearm.

Worse, Israel has lost the chance to force the action. Hamas decides whether to keep the ceasefire in place by releasing more hostages; Israel has no choice in the matter.

Militarily/Strategically: By agreeing to a ceasefire only weeks only beginning a bloody invasion, Israel enables its critics to question if the invasion was necessary at all - especially because it has failed to capture any senior Hamas commanders and killed only one, the commander of the group’s “Northern Gaza Brigade.” Even the most fervent Israeli partisan cannot justify killing thousands of civilians to take out the equivalent of one mid-level general.

Morally: Most importantly, Israel has squandered what is left of the world’s sympathy for it. It should have told Hamas that the taking of hostages was a war crime and it would never agree to a ceasefire as long as Hamas held them. It should have drawn that line and stuck to it. It should have repeated over and over: As long as Hamas holds hostages, Israel views all of Gaza as a legitimate military target.

Now Israel has lost that moral clarity. 

As much as it pains me to say so, I have to agree.

Sure, the relatives of the released hostages win in this arrangement, and that's wonderful for the individual families that are involved. Sure, the criminal scum that Israel was forced to release just adds a few more death cult members to a palestinian population that is loaded with them—no big deal. 

But Israel as a whole loses.  

No one who is anti-Israel will give the Israelis credit for any cessation in violence including the leftist elites who lead many countries and all of the main stream media. No one who is anti-Israel will recognize that the deal gives new power to an Islamist death cult, No one will make any demands of Hamas—only Israel.

I hope in the end this works out in a way that allows good to triumph over evil. But I fear that's nothing more than fantasy thinking.


The Biggest Lie becomes even bigger. Rabbi Michael Barclay comments on the reason that palestinian "civilians" (who the lie goes, "hate" Hamas) are returning to the War Zone during the 4-day truce:

From the moment the ceasefire started, hours before the hostages were exchanged, Hamas revealed its real goal of this ceasefire time if we only look at their actions. It is a setup to increase demonstrations for Gazan “civilians” after Israel recommences the war.

Thousands of Gazan “civilians” are moving frim the safety of the south back to the battlefield of the north, including women and children. On Thursday night, Hamas urged that all “civilians” who support them go back to the north. Why would they do this? Why would any family consciously put themselves back in harm’s way when they could stay safely in the south?

It is because they are not “innocent civilians” at all. They are simply Hamas terrorists and supporters without physical weapons. These “civilians” are not forced human shields being abused by Hamas, they are willing and active cogs in the Hamas war effort, willing to die for their cause of destroying Israel and repeating the horrors of October 7, which they celebrated in the streets of Gaza at that time. They are unarmed soldiers whose only goal is to protect Hamas against Israel when the war is restarted in a few days. These “innocents” are anything but innocent, and are returning to the north with the intent of stopping Israel from destroying Hamas bases, tunnels, and weapons.

These thousands of unarmed soldiers are not being forced to be human shields. They are returning to the north so that they can become martyrs. They hope to die for their cause, and in so doing, create more images of “innocents” dying to negatively affect world opinion of Israel. They are hoping that their presence as “civilians” will protect Hamas bases from Israeli attacks; that it will lead to more IDF deaths, God forbid, and that if they die, they will have sacrificed themselves as brave soldiers for Hamas in the effort to get the world to allow Hamas to survive this war.

As depraved as Hamas’ acts on October 7 were, the acts of these unarmed soldiers betray an equally sick and twisted psychology.  

Thousands of Gazans are consciously putting their own children in harm’s way with one intent: to protect Hamas with their children’s lives. These are not innocent civilians; they are the very worst and most dangerous type of soldiers: soldiers with a death wish. Not just for themselves, but for their children.

Canon fodder and Martyrdom—Islam at its most perverse.


The editors of The Wall Street Journal comment:

... Hamas is using the hostages to play on Western respect for human life. Hamas knows its strategy is dividing Israeli opinion between those who prioritize the release of the hostages and those who want Hamas defeated so it can never again slaughter 1,200 people.

Hamas is also manipulating the world, including the Biden Administration. President Biden said Sunday he hopes the initial four-day military truce can be extended so more hostages will be released. That includes the unknown number of Americans held in who-knows-what condition underground. Hamas released the first U.S. hostage on Sunday, a 4-year-old American-Israeli girl, Abigail Edan, whose parents were murdered in front of her.

But every day the truce lasts the more time the jihadists have to regroup, slip out of Gaza, rearm, or plan more ambushes against Israelis. And the longer it lasts the more odds increase of an extended cease-fire, which is what Hamas really wants. The onus will fall on Israel to end the truce, though Hamas is unlikely ever to release all hostages, who are its only source of leverage.

This is a terrible choice that Hamas doesn’t have to make because it considers civilians, including Palestinians, to be expendable weapons of war. That’s why it hides in hospitals, schools and mosques—and kidnaps women and children to serve its murderous ends.

In a way, this is similar to Sophie's Choice. No matter what decision is made going forward, Israel loses. But the world has already decided (predictably and wrongly) that Israel is the villain in this story. Maybe it's time for the Israelis to play the part—publicly demand that Hamas release ALL the hostages within 24 hours, since keeping them is a international war crime. Start the clock the minute the demand is made. When they refuse (and they will), end the truce ...

... drop a million warning leaflets, use social media to warn palestinian "civilians" to leave once again now that they've cynically returned to the war zone, wait another 12 hours, and then ...

... finish Hamas with prejudice.

Sunday, November 26, 2023

Israel at War—Axis of Lies

Yesterday, the Prime Minister of Ireland and a member of the world wide progressive elites, turned his virtue signalling dial to 11 and posted a tweet on X coincident with the release of a few Israeli hostages that expressed joy that the little Israeli children who were "lost" had now been "found" and returned to Israel. Someone else noted that no child was "lost," but all of the children were kidnapped by a barbaric, Islamist terror group who used them as pawns to negotiate a cease fire that just might allow the terrorists to avoid obliteration.

What has been "lost" as days become weeks become months is the reason that a war occurred—the murder of entire Israeli families, the rape, murder, mutilation and barbaric display of young Israeli women, the murder and mutilation (beheading) of infants, and, of course, the kidnapping of 240+ men, women and children. [1]  Hamas—the perpetrator of these atrocities, sits at the center of an "axis of evil" that incorporates the terror group itself, its hundreds of thousands (millions?) of palestinian supporters, and its puppet masters in Iran.

But there's another 'axis' that is, in my opinion, just as important and just as impactful—an "Axis of Lies" who job it is to ensure that the atrocities are "lost" down a memory hole, the truth is obfuscated and distorted, and the public is convinced that Hamas is a group of freedom fighters while Israel is their "oppressor." The Axis of Lies encompasses pro-palestinian/pro-Hamas Muslim activists in the West, leftists who are their useful idiots, and the anti-Israel propaganda media (e.g., NYT, WaPo, LAT, BBC, Reuters, AP, CNN, MSNBC, ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS) that is the public relations are of the Palestinians and Hamas.

I have discussed some of the lies that are trafficked by the Axis here, here, here (especially) and here. But more lies surface every single day, enthusiastically spread by the Axis of Lies. For example:

LIE:  12,000+ palestinian civilians (half women and children) have been killed by Israel.  

TRUTH: where to begin: (1) these data come from Hamas and are unverifiable and based on part experience, flat-out propaganda; Here's a fair assessment:

The media have made a practice of presenting Hamas's propaganda as at least as credible as Israel's evidence-backed claims, despite the group's record of lying about everything from Palestinian deaths to its massacre Israeli civilians on Oct. 7.

(2) all women and children were told repeatedly by Israeli to leave the war zone and had opportunity to do unless they were stopped by Hamas; (3) a non-trivial percentage of whatever the accurate death toll is were Hamas terrorists and their palestinian supporters—odd that no one in the propaganda media asks what the percentage is.

LIE: Israel is attacking hospitals in Gaza for no reason. 

TRUTH: Video now proves that a web of Hams tunnels exist immediately under al Shifa hospital, whos patients, doctors and nurses were used a human shields for the Hamas cowards.

LIE: Gaza is the most crowded place on the planet. 

TRUTH: Actually, there are 239 other cities and/or locations that have a higher density of people per square kilometer. Gaza is densely populated, but doesn't even come close to the most crowded place on the planet.

As an aside, the Axis of Lies also makes heavy use of lies of omission. For example, the NYT posted a picture of a "disfigured palestinian woman prisoner [who was released as part of the Hamas hostage release deal] whose story is well known" on X with the specific intent of engendering sympathy for the poor palestinian woman. What they omitted is "the story." The woman was a suicide bomber who detonated her bomb early when intercepted by an Israeli police officer. The bomb disfigured her and injured the officer. The NYT's chutzpa and omission would actually be funny if it wasn't so blatant and biased. As someone once said: "No self respecting fish would want to be wrapped in an old copy of the New York Times."

And then, of course, there WaPo:

What WaPo omits is a statistical profile of the prisoners (a.k.a. convicted or detained terrorists and criminals) including murderers, suicide bombers, violent rioters, and the like. If those people are truly a "small shot of relief" for palestinians, the The Biggest Lie is yet again proven to be exactly that.

The Axis of Lies cultivates anti-Israel hysteria on university campuses and on the streets of major cities in the West. It is absolutely not hyperbole to suggest that the pro-Hamas activists and there leftist supporters who are rioting across the west have an eerie similarity to the Germans who did the same in the late 1930s. That led to a very dark place, and I have no doubt that more than a few of today's rioters/demonstrators would embrace going there.

I can only hope that their blatant anti-Semitic positions (think: "from the river to the sea ...") along with their growing violence against Jews and Jewish institutions, coupled with their obvious attempts to memory hole the Hamas atrocities (think: the tearing down of posters for the kidnapped children and others) will sway some who lean left, including a non-trivial number of Jewish progressives. The following X post is representative of the feeling of at least some progressives:

Since October 7, I have experienced a significant shift in my political beliefs towards the right. I am not alone. This is happening to most Jewish friends who are horrified by the call from the left that goes “from the river to the sea” asking for the end of the state of Israel. 

 In the past, I was a donor to the Democratic Party and served on the board of the Clinton Foundation. October 7th marked a turning point, profoundly altering my political worldview and leaving the party. 

The impact was twofold: on one hand, the realization of the horrific massacre of Hamas and the kidnappings and burning of babies, and systematic rapes, all wildly celebrated in Gaza. Seeing so vividly that what Hamas wants is to kill all Jews was horrifying enough but to then see such support for Hamas from the American left all chanting, "from the River to the Sea" was the end of my relationship with, the so called, "progressives". 

Previously, I held an idealistic view of the left. Now, that view has drastically changed, adapting to a darker reality. I see the alliance between certain progressive factions, such as those represented by Representatives Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar, as a threat to Israel, to Jews and to democracy in the United States. The so-called "woke" culture, by sympathizing with Hamas, has become the enemy in my eyes. Conservative culture, in supporting the democracy of Israel, has become a new ally. 

I find it deeply troubling when figures like Tlaib and Omar express intentions to recognize Palestine without fully addressing the atrocities committed by Hamas. This, to me, seems like a reward to terror, a slap in the face to democratic ideals, to the Jewish people, and to all Americans who stand against rewarding terrorism. 

Jews were 10 million in Europe in 1939, now only 1 million remain. But just as Germany went from being Nazi to being a great defender of democracy, the right wing in the United States has transformed from having a history of denying rights to now being a leading force in the fight for individual freedom and the defense of the individual. The left instead, which once fought for democracy, now supports causes that attack individual freedom, Judaism and Israel. The world has changed. [emphasis mine]

October 7 was a wake-up call for me.

It damn well better be!


[1] You may wonder why I repeat the litany of Hamas atrocities in so many "Israel at War" posts. The reason is simple—to emphasize and re-emphasis that the Axis of Lies wants you to forget the atrocities. In my very small way, I refuse to let them succeed.

UPDATE-1 (11-27-2023):

I'm not the only person who believes that the entire narrative associated with the Israel-Hamas war and the "plight" of the palestinians is build on lies—from the very foundational claims to the day-to-day accusations that are widely promulgated by the anti-Israel propaganda media. Lies and more lies—all day, every day.

Here's David Bernstein outlining some of the most egregious and widely circulated lies:


These lies are rarely, if ever, challenged within the propaganda media. Rather, they are used by Muslim anti-Israel activists, the useful idiots on the Left (who are ignorant of both history and modern-day facts), and of course, a media that acts as their amplifier.

UPDATE-2 (11-27-2023):

One of the most blatant propaganda media sources and liars is Reuters:

Soldiers? Really? One of Reuter's "soldiers" was 4 years old—a little girl who watched her parents be brutally murdered by the Hamas barbarians that Reuter's news hounds seem to be infatuated with.

Lies from top to bottom!

Friday, November 24, 2023

Israel at War—A Warning from 2014

As Israel enters into a deal with the devil to get as many hostages as possible released, its intentions are laudable, but the outcome is perilous. Islamist barbarians who committed mind-numbing atrocities are now being quietly praised by some in the propaganda media for releasing battered civilians and small children who they kidnapped and are now using as bargaining chips in a cynical attempt to survive. 

The Islamist barbarians, Hamas, and their hundreds of thousands (millions?) of palestinian supporters will assuredly violate the hostage agreement,. When they do, Israel might respond with disproportional violence (as the palestinian apologists gasp in faux-horror). The propaganda media will then resume its dishonest and repugnant condemnation of Israel and push The Biggest Lie over and over again.

This entire war follows a script written by Hamas and presented by the propaganda media and  its left-wing puppet masters. Almost 10 years ago, during the 2014 Hamas-Israel confrontation, former AP reporter and editor Matti Friedman (read the whole thing) wrote an analysis the could have been written last week (h/t: @AGHamilton29). As you read some of these excerpts (written in 2014), ask yourself if anything has changed over the past decade:

The lasting importance of this summer’s war, I believe, doesn’t lie in the war itself. It lies instead in the way the war has been described and responded to abroad, and the way this has laid bare the resurgence of an old, twisted pattern of thought and its migration from the margins to the mainstream of Western discourse—namely, a hostile obsession with Jews. The key to understanding this resurgence is not to be found among jihadi webmasters, basement conspiracy theorists, or radical activists. It is instead to be found first among the educated and respectable people who populate the international news industry; decent people, many of them, and some of them my former colleagues.

While global mania about Israeli actions has come to be taken for granted, it is actually the result of decisions made by individual human beings in positions of responsibility—in this case, journalists and editors. The world is not responding to events in this country, but rather to the description of these events by news organizations. The key to understanding the strange nature of the response is thus to be found in the practice of journalism, and specifically in a severe malfunction that is occurring in that profession—my profession—here in Israel.

Friedman's key point: "The world is not responding to events in this country, but rather to the description of these events by news organizations." And therein lies both the power and the corruption of the propaganda media.They allow pro-palestinian lies to go unchallenged, phony palestinian death statistics to be reported without context (many of the deaths are Hamas) or cynicism (Hamas controls the narrative and left-wing media and NGOs repeat it).

A reporter working in the international press corps here understands quickly that what is important in the Israel-Palestinian story is Israel. If you follow mainstream coverage, you will find nearly no real analysis of Palestinian society or ideologies, profiles of armed Palestinian groups, or investigation of Palestinian government. Palestinians are not taken seriously as agents of their own fate. The West has decided that Palestinians should want a state alongside Israel, so that opinion is attributed to them as fact ... The story mandates that they exist as passive victims of the party that matters.

Israeli actions are analyzed and criticized, and every flaw in Israeli society is aggressively reported. In one seven-week period, from Nov. 8 to Dec. 16, 2011, I decided to count the stories coming out of our bureau on the various moral failings of Israeli society ... I counted 27 separate articles, an average of a story every two days. In a very conservative estimate, this seven-week tally was higher than the total number of significantly critical stories about Palestinian government and society, including the totalitarian Islamists of Hamas, that our bureau had published in the preceding three years.

The Hamas charter, for example, calls not just for Israel’s destruction but for the murder of Jews and blames Jews for engineering the French and Russian revolutions and both world wars; the charter was never mentioned in print when I was at the AP, though Hamas won a Palestinian national election and had become one of the region’s most important players. To draw the link with this summer’s [2014] events: An observer might think Hamas’ decision in recent years to construct a military infrastructure beneath Gaza’s civilian infrastructure would be deemed newsworthy, if only because of what it meant about the way the next conflict would be fought and the cost to innocent people. But that is not the case. The Hamas emplacements were not important in themselves, and were therefore ignored. What was important was the Israeli decision to attack them.

Heh. If you've been following propaganda media's blatant lies about "Israel's attacks" on Gaza's hospitals, you'd think that the Hamas tunnels didn't exist under the hospitals and that Hamas doesn't use its own civilians (not to mention the hostages it has kidnapped) as human shields. 

Friedman goes on to discuss the claim by some propaganda media "journalists" today that Hamas intimidation warps media coverage. Remember, this was written 10 years ago:

The fact is that Hamas intimidation is largely beside the point because the actions of Palestinians are beside the point: Most reporters in Gaza believe their job is to document violence directed by Israel at Palestinian civilians. That is the essence of the Israel story.

Going back 10 years, Friedman notes the harsh reality that I have tried to emphasize throughout the "Israel at War" series:

The Israel story is framed in the same terms that have been in use since the early 1990s—the quest for a “two-state solution.” It is accepted that the conflict is “Israeli-Palestinian,” meaning that it is a conflict taking place on land that Israel controls—0.2 percent of the Arab world—in which Jews are a majority and Arabs a minority. The conflict is more accurately described as “Israel-Arab,” or “Jewish-Arab”—that is, a conflict between the 6 million Jews of Israel and 300 million Arabs in surrounding countries. (Perhaps “Israel-Muslim” would be more accurate, to take into account the enmity of non-Arab states like Iran and Turkey, and, more broadly, 1 billion Muslims worldwide.) This is the conflict that has been playing out in different forms for a century, before Israel existed, before Israel captured the Palestinian territories of Gaza and the West Bank, and before the term “Palestinian” was in use.

Let me be blunt. Muslims are taught to hold infidels in contempt—to convert them to Islam when possible, to subjugate them when necessary, and to use other more violent methods of "submission" when appropriate. That's the dirty big secret that the woke media simply will not explore or criticize or even describe. They frame that secret as "Islamophobia" As leftists, they've learned that name calling and epithets work when people who question the narrative begin to get too close to the truth. 

And finally, Friedman gets to the larger issue of anti-Semitism and the manner in which young, liberals viewed the world in 2014. The 2014 worldview was the same one used by young Jewish progressives until the onslaught of overt leftist anti-Semitism masquerading as pro-palestinian sentiment erupted in 2023:

For centuries, stateless Jews played the role of a lightning rod for ill will among the majority population. They were a symbol of things that were wrong. Did you want to make the point that greed was bad? Jews were greedy. Cowardice? Jews were cowardly. Were you a Communist? Jews were capitalists. Were you a capitalist? In that case, Jews were Communists. Moral failure was the essential trait of the Jew. It was their role in Christian tradition—the only reason European society knew or cared about them in the first place.

Like many Jews who grew up late in the 20th century in friendly Western cities, I dismissed such ideas as the feverish memories of my grandparents. One thing I have learned—and I’m not alone this summer—is that I was foolish to have done so. Today, people in the West tend to believe the ills of the age are racism, colonialism, and militarism. The world’s only Jewish country has done less harm than most countries on earth, and more good—and yet when people went looking for a country that would symbolize the sins of our new post-colonial, post-militaristic, post-ethnic dream-world, the country they chose was this one.

When the people responsible for explaining the world to the world, journalists, cover the Jews’ war as more worthy of attention than any other, when they portray the Jews of Israel as the party obviously in the wrong, when they omit all possible justifications for the Jews’ actions and obscure the true face of their enemies, what they are saying to their readers—whether they intend to or not—is that Jews are the worst people on earth. The Jews are a symbol of the evils that civilized people are taught from an early age to abhor. International press coverage has become a morality play starring a familiar villain.

Today, November 24, 2023, Friedman's comments echo across time. Less than 2 months ago, most Jewish progressives "dismissed such ideas as the feverish memories of [their] grandparents. They could not see the ingrained anti-Semitism of the left, or its vicious and enthusiastic support for enemies of the Jews. 

Today, I hope that a majority of Jewish progressive admit, "I was foolish to have done so." But I worry that won't be the case. And if I'm right, that may be among the biggest tragedies of all in this war against Islamist barbarism.

Thursday, November 23, 2023

Thanksgiving Day—2023

There are many things to be thankful for on this Thanksgiving Day—our health and that of our friends and family, lives that (unlike the lives of far too many) are calm and relatively stable, the good fortune to live in a beautiful place and in a comfortable home, the ability to give generously to those who are in need, and the satisfaction that our many decades of hard work will leave a legacy to our children and grandchildren.

We live in a wonderful country, despite the lies and distortions published daily by forces that are working hard to sow chaos and distrust. We're fortunate that those forces exist on the extremist fringe—their voices amplified by media and entertainment, academia and a current political class that sympathize with their worldview. We're also fortunate that the voices of chaos and distrust are being rejected by greater and greater numbers as the years pass and their message becomes ever more strident.

We're fortunate to live in a country that extends opportunity to all—a country in which tens of millions still believe in merit and accomplishment and reject the notion that some within it are permanent "victims." Our country remains a place where those that come from humble backgrounds can succeed.

So yeah, it's important to give thanks, and that's what we should do on this day and every other throughout the year.


Israel at War—The Hostage Deal

It should come as no surprise to anyone that Israel has decided to put the lives of its kidnapped citizens ahead of its significant ongoing military advantage as it continues the destruction of Hamas.  Obviously, the release of even one person from the clutches of the Islamist death cult is a cause for rejoicing, but any clear-eyed view must admit this deal can also be viewed as a victory for evil.

The editors of The Wall Street Journal provide a useful summary:

Israeli leaders believe the trade is worth it, and it’s not our place to second-guess their judgment. In exchange for returning Israeli children and women, 12 or 13 a day, Hamas is set to receive a four-day pause in Israeli military operations and the release of about 150 of its under-18 and female operatives from Israeli prisons.

During the cease-fire, Israel will allow more fuel and aid into Gaza. The pause might also extend longer if Hamas gives up more hostages, 10 for each additional day.

The deal again shows the moral gulf between the two sides. Hamas kidnapped Israeli children as young as nine months to use as hostages and spring its jihadists who have been arrested or convicted in a fair trial for their crimes. Israel takes military risks to save its citizens. Hamas risks Palestinian civilians to save itself.

Even as Israelis rejoice for the women and children who will return home, they know Hamas is rejoicing too. Its war crimes have been rewarded. It will steal fuel from its own people to power its terror tunnels. Its shattered northern Gaza brigades will use the cease-fire to regroup, escape from weak positions and set more ambushes for Israeli troops. Israel’s leaders made this deal knowing that their soldiers will pay for it.

Expect Hamas to game this agreement, using it to prolong the ceasefire and at the same time fortify its positions and tunnel defenses. And for those who celebrate the ceasefire as a victory for the "innocent, suffering palestinians," it might be worth noting that 3/4 of those same "innocent, suffering palestinians" supported the October 7th atrocities conducted by Hamas.

Like the editors of the WSJ, I hesitate to second guess the Israelis, but in a just and moral world (it is not) mass media opinion would DEMAND the release of ALL hostages BEFORE any ceasefire. Needless to say, that won't happen because many of the most vocal anti-Israel critics  in the media, academia and the Left actually do want Hamas to survive so it can continue its barbaric war against the Jews.

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

Israel at War—The Memory Hole

The leftist propaganda media—exemplified by the NYT, WaPo, CNN, Reuters—is relentless in its attempts to: 

  1. memory hole (i.e., remove from public consciousness) the October 7th atrocities committed by Hamas—whole families executed at close range, young women raped, murdered, mutilated, and finally displayed in the streets of Gaza before cheering crowds of "peaceful" palestinian "civilians," infants murdered and beheaded, and 240+ men, women and children kidnapped and moved to the tunnels under Gaza;
  2. act as the public relations arm of Hamas and the "peaceful" palestinians

In social media post after post, they discuss the humanitarian plight of the palestinians without mentioning the reasons for their predicament (i.e., the atrocities); the clear and irrefutable fact that those same civilians are being used a human shields by Hamas terrorists, and/or the clear and irrefutable fact that Israel has and continues to encourage civilians to leave the war zone.

But the most obvious street level attempt at memory holing the Islamist atrocities is not being performed by the propaganda media, but rather by palestinian activists and the young, leftist useful idiots who have been coordinated (paid?) to tear down posters that depict every person who was kidnapped and is being held hostage in Gaza. [1]

Sure, the activists and leftists hate Jews, but that's not why they're tearing down the posters. They desperately need to help people forget the reason that the war started, to forget that there was a ceasefire on October 6th, and that Hamas decided to violate it on October 7th—to forget the Hamas atrocities.

It's interesting that the poster tear-down boys and girls are really upset that they're being doxxed. But why—they should be proud of their anti-Semitism, right? They whine about potential retribution for their actions and cry that they now feel unsafe, now that their photos have been widely published. Poor babies. 

Maybe they should put up posters explaining their suffering. Yeah, I kinda like that.


[1]  It appears that negotiations will shortly lead to the release of 50 kidnapped women and children along with an Israeli #ceasefire for 4 days. 

You'd think the propaganda media might show a little more outrage about the simple facts that Hamas still holds about 150 kidnapped people and continues to use them a human shields. Oops, I forgot, the NYT, WaPo, CNN, Reuters and many, many other media sources want us to forget what Hamas did. They'll spend more time condemning Israel's #increasefire after the 4-day pause than they ever would asking why the world is so sanguine about the barbaric kidnapping and its continuing use as a bargaining chip.

Tuesday, November 21, 2023

Israel at War—Western Civilization

Ben Shapiro is a conservative firebrand who is not shy about calling out the insane positions adopted by leftists in general and pro-palestinian demonstrators (virtually, all either Muslims or hard-left ideologues). In a speech at the University of Wisconsin-Madison before 1,100 people, he talked about the virtues of western civilization. The College Fix reports:

Shapiro started the speech without apology: “Your civilization is better than Hamas’, and it’s better than those of the people who sympathize with Hamas and you should not be shy about that,” he said.

“Your civilization is better in every conceivable way, it is better in terms of freedom, it is better in terms of decency, and it is better materially,” Shapiro said.

“Hamas’s morality is evil. In the view of Hamas, the ultimate goal is the full destruction of all non-believers. To that end, they are willing to kill babies in their cribs,” he said.

Shapiro is, of course, correct. Western values encompass everything that Hamas and their supporters on the Left hate: 

  • freedom of speech without threat of cancellation or government retribution;
  • freedom of religion without the threat that a large majority can inflict pain on a small minority;
  • a meritocracy in which people are rewarded for their accomplishments, not their position in the DEI heirarchy;
  • a moral code that demands that all people be given an equal chance, but does not demand equal outcomes;
  • a criminal code that applies to all equally, punishing those who do wrong and protecting the rest from political prosecution;
  • a democratic government that shuns authoritarian dictates and mandates, allowing individuals freedom to control their own lives;
  • a government that is not intrusive, does not spend unnecessarily, and is not self-perpetuating;
  • a rejection of identity politics that characterizes some people as oppressed victims and gives them special treatment and exemptions that others do not get
  • and much, much more.

The Left has been working hard to erode these values and has succeeded in many respects. It's long past time that the rest of us push back—hard.

Meanwhile, outside the auditorium where Shapiro was speaking, leftist college students and Muslim activists chanted:

“Hey, hey, ho, ho, Israel has got to go,” 

“From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free,” and 

“Ben Shapiro you can’t hide, you’re supporting genocide.”

What is it about leftists that makes them chant in rhyme? Do they think it makes them clever?  It doesn't. Maybe they think it's virtuous? Anything but. Do they think that lying in rhyme make the lies any more believable? Nope. Possibly they believe that any observer listening will tap their foot and say, "Yeah ... that rhyme got me. I'm all in for the narrative." LOL.

Probably, it's because the left uses rhymes as a substitute for substantive debate or sadly, clear thinking. Their many insane or dishonest positions and narratives cannot be defended without resorting to lies, counter-historical claims, or psychological projection ... and rhymes.

So rhyme away, lefties. Your trained hamsters in the propaganda media will happily promote your ignorant chants, but thinking people will reject your childish and inane behavior. 

And meanwhile, the few of us who think that all civilizations and worldviews are NOT created equal will work hard to dismantle the damage you have done and insist on continuing to do.  And we'll do it without shouting a single rhyme.

Monday, November 20, 2023

Israel at War—Moral Clarity

There is nothing good that has come out of the Hamas atrocities conducted on October 7th, but there are a few things that are clarifying. The Left has now openly aligned itself with Hamas and its millions of palestinian supporters (no ... the majority of palestinians do NOT hate Hamas). As a consequence, many on the Left have openly adopted anti-Semitic memes (no ... the claim that being anti-Zionist or anti-Israel is somehow not being anti-Jew is absurd and disingenuous) and publicly/enthusiastically demonstrated their anti-Semitism in social media posts and often-violent street demonstrations. Lastly, the propaganda media can now be rightfully characterized as the PR arm of Hamas, working 24-7 to memory-hole the murder of Israeli families, the rape, murder and mutilation of young Israeli women, infanticide and, of course the violent kidnapping of 240 innocents including dozens of small children, all the while reporting fictional Hamas death-toll numbers without even a smidgen of skepticism. Bottom line, the Left has dropped its mask and demonstrated to more moderate Jewish progressives that it is NOT their friend.

But all progressives tend to be fantasy thinkers. Right now, moderate progressives are suffering from cognitive dissonance as they watch their more hard-Left brethren become their true anti-Israel selves. They are repelled by the viciousness that is a trademark of the hard-left, but at the same time, they still buy into the canard that non-Hamas palestinians are just peace-loving people who would sit down and sing Kumbayah if given half a chance. They are appalled by the atrocities committed by Hamas but are aghast at the "human suffering" that is occurring in Gaza. 

They keep telling their friends that all of this is "complex" and that "one person's terrorist is another's freedom fighter." They just cannot deal with a hard reality that is expressed by Kurt Schlichter:

Here’s a cheat sheet – going out and raping and murdering people at a rave, bad. Hunting down and blowing into pieces people who go out and rape and murder people at a rave, good.

Being a terrorist is wrong. Being a savage is wrong. Being a barbarian is wrong. But fighting back against them is not wrong. Fighting back against them is a moral obligation and a solid moral good. That’s true even when you have to hurt innocent people while doing it. The business of defending civilization is messy, and “war is hell” is not just a cliché but a fact. Today, all we hear about is the collateral damage levied upon those whom the terrorists hid around. Well, it happens, and it’s legitimate. The fact that killing terrorists means also killing those the terrorists hide behind does not give the enemy a Get-Out-Of-Being-Killed-Free card. Their cowardice does not get to define the scope of our retribution and, to Israel’s credit, it has not. The law of war certainly does not say so. The fact that killing enemy combatants means killing enemy civilians is absolutely within the law of war as it actually reads, and not as some blue-haired 23-year-old with daddy issues says it reads on Twitter ...

It is morally correct for the good guys to destroy enemies who seek to destroy the good guys and, unfortunately, the people the bad guys choose to be around ...

There is nothing moral about stopping the war on Hamas. The only moral course of action is to wipe out every single Hamas terrorist. For the freaks screaming about a ceasefire – and putting aside the Hamas mass murder spree that started this off broke a prior ceasefire – here’s a suggestion. Tell your Hamas buddies to surrender. [1] That would end it. But the freaks won’t ever do that because they do not want peace. They want a Hamas victory. Well, decent people want an Israeli victory, and there should be no ceasefire until every single Hamas scumbag is in chains or in a bag.

Kurt, as is his style, pulls no punches, and that's a very good thing. Good and evil are the original binary. Only the morally vacuous try to find some third state in which barbaric atrocities can be justified by amorphous claims of "oppression" or false claims of "colonization." 


[1]  Why is it, do you think, that the pro-Hamas Left, who tell us repeatedly and with great passion that they care so, so much about palestinian civilians, are not demanding that their pals in Hamas surrender and release ALL the hostages immediately ... you know ... to stop the killing? That would actually lead to the "#ceasefire" that they demand. But oddly, the Left make no such demands of Hamas. They'd rather chant anti-Semitic rhymes like "...from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free", block traffic, tear down posters of innocent children who have been kidnapped by Hamas, and smash windows.

So ... those of us who recognize their hypocrisy, their moral vacuity, their historical ignorance, and their blatant lies, have coined another hashtag to be used until Hamas no longer exists—#increasefire. [footnote is mine]


At the end of the day, you can judge a group by the alliances they make and the friends they keep. They Left has already chosen to align itself with Islam (and the Jew-Hatred that is endemic is that ideology). It has decided that Islamists are their friends.

The editors of Issues and Insights comment:

So we have a country of 9.23 million, mostly desert, that is only 75 years old, is “surrounded by enemies” and in a constant state of war, which has “no natural resources,” yet “produces more start-up companies on a per capita basis than large, peaceful, and stable nations and regions like Japan, China, India, Korea, Canada, and all of Europe.” It is the only nation outside of the U.S. that Warren Buffet invests in.

Have the Palestinians or Hamas, currently at war with Israel, done anything that compares to what the Israelis have achieved? More broadly, beyond the Allahista terrorist groups, what has Islam contributed to the modern world?

Not much.

Since 1901, Jews, who total 0.2% of the world’s population, have won 189 Nobel prizes for physics, medicine, chemistry and economics. Over that same period, Muslims, who make up nearly a quarter of the global population, have won four.\If it seems as Islamic groups, Hamas and Hezbollah prominent among them, are more interested in spreading nihilism, committing atrocities, and destroying civilization than making the world a better place, well, then there’s a good reason for it. That is exactly what the heroes of an increasingly large number foolish Westerners are aiming for.

Meanwhile, Israelis see themselves “as having a role in the world to repair the world,” says Chemi Peres, managing partner and co-founder of the venture capital firm Pitango, chairman of the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation, and son of the late Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres.

“We call it tikkun olam, and here at the Peres Center we have a mission statement, which is to introduce innovation and new ideas and new technologies, not only for ourselves but to solve the problems of the world.”

Islam is part of that world, but too many of its adherents live to do just the opposite. 

The Left and their Islamist pals are nihilists. Their goal is to ruin things, to stop others from achieving things, and to drape themselves in moral supremacy that is an illusion. They're very good at it.


The allies and friends of the Left tell us a lot about who they are, and potentially, what they just might be capable of. At a more abstract level, it worth exploring where they come from to help us understand where they might go. Roger Kimball comments:

To some extent, the [Left's] flirtation with evil we see coruscating through the hearts and minds of the constitutionally gullible is just an updated exfoliation of the same sort of raised-fist anti-American animus one saw in among the coddled classes in the the 1960s and 1970s. It is all of a piece with the radicalism of such egregious paragons of prattle as Jane Fonda, Angela Davis, and Susan Sontag. “The truth is,” Sontag wrote in one notorious essay, “that Mozart, Pascal, Boolean algebra, Shakespeare, parliamentary government, baroque churches, Newton, the emancipation of women, Kant, Marx, and Balanchine ballets don’t redeem what this particular civilization has wrought upon the world. The white race is the cancer of human history.” (It is perhaps worth noting that Sontag later regretted that famous last phrase because, she said, it was “unfair to cancer.)”

My sense, however, is that a changed world has made changes in the nature of the radical assaults we see cropping up everywhere in the Western world. An uptick in anti-Semitism is always a sort of canary in the political mine, a reliable indication of brewing mischief. It is a curious fact, not without irony, that anti-Semitism is generally a feature of radical Left-wing activism. The sobering contingency this time is that anti-Semitism is not just a component, a leitmotif, of the protests but almost its main theme. It’s happened before, of course, but it did not end at all well.

Many within the West have embraced insanity. When you normalize the insane, you are only one step away from normalizing and even condoning evil as a means to an end. 


Because the propaganda media controls the flow of information for most people (BTW, that's beginning to change with outlets like The Free Press, X, and Substack) a considerable percentage of Westerners believe that the Leftist anti-Israel/pro-Hamas narrative is the dominent narrative. It isn't.

Here's yet another comment on good and evil by Hillel Fuld:

It might not be politically correct to say, but if you side with Hamas, if you are glorifying Bin Laden, if you are chanting for the genocide of the Jewish people, if you are calling for Israel to cease its fire and let Hamas continue to exist, there really is no other way to say this and I’m sorry I have to be the one to tell you this, but you chose wrong. You chose evil. You are an accomplice to it all! 

It’s not too late to reconsider but if you don’t, and you stand against Israel now, you will be held accountable. 

Hamas has helped clear things up and now the world knows clearly who is good and who is evil. 

And thanks to the internet, there will be no denying where you stood. We see you and we won’t forget. 

The left really, really doesn't like accountability. I just hope it's coming, and I also hope that those who are moderate progressive Jews won't forget what their leftist brethren said and did over the past 50 days.


Sunday, November 19, 2023

Israel at War—CAIR

The propaganda media is beginning to panic. Although palestinian activists and their millions of leftist supporters throughout the West have been well-funded and very vocal, it looks like Israel is well on its way to destroying the propagandist's favorite terror group, Hamas.  In their effort to sway public opinion and force Israel to stop fighting (you know, the infamous "humanitarian pause") they trot out their go-to Muslim spokespeople—the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).

Way, way back in August of 2006, I published my first post on CAIR:

The MSM often quotes the views of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and characterizes the group and its spokesmen as “moderate” in their views. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Earlier this year [2006], CAIR brought suit against one of its critics, Andrew Whitehead, claiming defamation. The lawsuit was dismissed with prejudice.

Whitehead had argued that:

  • “Let their [sic] be no doubt that CAIR is a terrorist supporting front organization that is partially funded by terrorists, and that CAIR wishes nothing more than the implementation of Sharia law in America.”• CAIR is an “organization founded by Hamas supporters which seeks to overthrow Constitutional government in the United States and replace it with an Islamist theocracy using our own Constitution as protection.
  • “ACAIR reminds our readers that CAIR was started by Hamas members and is supported by terrorist supporting individuals, groups and countries.”
  • “Why oppose CAIR? CAIR has proven links to, and was founded by, Islamic terrorists. CAIR is not in the United States to promote the civil rights of Muslims. CAIR is here to make radical Islam the dominant religion in the United States and convert our country into an Islamic theocracy along the lines of Iran. In addition, CAIR has managed, through the adroit manipulation of the popular media, to present itself as the ‘moderate’ face of Islam in the United States. CAIR succeeded to the point that the majority of its members are not aware that CAIR actively supports terrorists and terrorist supporting groups and nations. In addition, CAIR receives direct funding from Islamic terrorists supporting countries.”
  • “CAIR is a fundamentalist organization dedicated to the overthrow of the United States Constitution and the installation of an Islamic theocracy in America.

When Whitehead’s attorney’s requested “extensive information regarding CAIR’s finances, its relationship to Hamas, its ties to Saudi Arabia, and ties to other Islamists,” CAIR decided to drop the suit. Hmmm. I wonder why?

Islamofascists fight us on a number of fronts, but the most insidious is their use of propaganda and misinformation. CAIR is a master of this tactic. They feed on political correctness and pervert our justified concern for minority rights. Their cynical attempts to "protect" islam from criticism are nothing more than propaganda.

The real problem, however, is that CAIR (and similar organizations) are often aided by the main stream media in the USA, who report their claims without critical evaluation, context, or any attempt at accuracy. Is the MSM complicit or simply incompetent? I would argue: both.

Seventeen years later and nothing has changed. CAIR remains a Hamas front group, as dishonest and insidious as their terror masters in Gaza. The mainstream media (a.k.a. propaganda media) give these Islamist PR hacks a voice to spew their lies. They also refuse to report how the Left is funneling money to pro-Hamas groups. Disgusting, but not the least bit surprising.


The Left, their trained hamsters in the propaganda media, and far too many Democrats use "Islamophobia" as a doubled-edged weapon. 

First, it's used whenever actual anti-Semitic incidents, driven by Muslim activists and their useful idiots on the Left, are on the rise. Groups like CAIR claim that the real danger is "Islamophobia" and attempt to draw a false equivalence between an overwhelmingly large number of actual anti-Semitic hate crimes and a very small number of anti-Muslim hate crimes.

Second, they use "Islamophobia" as a cudgel against anyone who criticizes Islam, its ideology, its religious leaders silence on Islamist atrocities, its many extremist terror groups, and its predilection for violence.

But because there are so few actual incidents of Islamophobia, groups like CAIR have to invent them.

Andy Ngo posted this report on X:

CAIR does PR for Islam and Islamist terror groups. The propaganda media knows that, but quotes CAIR press releases without questioning their veracity or their overriding intent. All the better to demonize Israel with their lies.


Saturday, November 18, 2023

Israel at War—The Biggest Lie, Part II

The propaganda media in the West is working overtime to amplify the deaths and suffering of the palestinian civilians as a consequence of a war initated by their leadership, the terror group, Hamas. Part of Hamas' strategy is to put civilians directly in harm's way, and then use their deaths or suffering as a propaganda tool. The leftist media (meaning 95% of all media) gleefully amplifies palestinian propaganda in an effort to demonize Israel and force them to throttle down their efforts to exterminate Hamas. Hence, the ubiquitous calls among leftist for a "ceasefire." [1]

In a recent "Israel at War" post, entitled The Biggest Lie, I addressed the many, many lies that have have grown out of the Hamas atrocities and their aftermath. I identified what i think is the biggest lie of all:

The vast majority of palestinians do not support Hamas, do not hate Jews, and are basically peaceful members of the global community who, if allowed to live in peace, would represent no threat to Israel.

In a poll conducted "from October 31 to November 7, the Arab World for Research and Development (AWRAD) surveyed 668 Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip." The findings were not surprising to me, but might give pause to any palestinian apologist who argues that 'the biggest lie' is, in fact, the truth. 

A brief summary of some of the many findings @AGHamilton29 provides some key polling statistics:

  • 75% [of palestinians] support the 10/7 massacre. 
  • 76% [of palestinians] have a positive view of Hamas. 9
  • 8.2% [of palestinians] have a negative view of America 
  • Interestingly, 64% [of palestinians] have a negative view of Iran. 
  • Also worth noting when given a choice between a shared state where both people co-exist, two states, or a Palestinian state from the river to the sea, 77.7% [of palestinians] choose the last option. 

I readily admit that all polling is suspect and that it could be inaccurate, but even if the numbers are off by 5 or 10 percent, the findings indicate that allowing Gaza and the West Bank, to maintain their current structure does nothing but invite Hamas 2.0 down the road. At least half, and probably closer to three-quarters of all palestinians support Hamas and reject any two state solution, preferring to see Israel disappear ("from the river to the sea"). [2]

Yet, Western leaders want to believe 'the biggest lie' because it allows them to try to impose yet another "ceasefire" that will enable to palestinians to create Hamas 2.0, even if Hamas 1.0 is completely destroyed. It allows the West to do what they always do, kick the can down the road, solving nothing, and placing yet another long term existential threat on Israel.

The correct approach for israel, IMO, is quite harsh and will be condemned by every Western government, all Muslims and their leftist allies. But condemnation doesn't make the approach wrong, in fact the harsher the opprobrium, the stronger the indication that it just might be the only approach that will enable Israel to live in some semblance of peace.

But more on that topic of a future post.


[1]  As an aside, it's reasonable to assert that there was a ceasefire in place on October 6th. That ceasefire was broken not by Israeli, but by Hamas, who committed shocking atrocities that killed 1,200 people, injuries thousands and kidnapped 240 more. It was the palestinian leadership (a.k.a. Hamas) that chose to abrogate the existing ceasefire, so any deaths and suffering that now occur are on Hamas and Hamas alone.

[2]  The palestinian attitude toward Israel is mirrored by most of the countries in the Arab Crescent. Alex Berenson writes:

... the deliberate atrocities of Oct. 7, planned by Hamas’s military commanders and cheered by its political leaders, mark Hamas as the Islamic State’s true successor. The two groups have in common the use of terror for propaganda, a profound indifference to civilian life, and a reliance on the Quran’s bloodiest verses as a foundational text.

But they differ in their enemies.

The Islamic State intended a modern caliphate on Muslim lands and thus spent most of its time killing other Muslims. Hamas - for now and the foreseeable future - is focused on destroying Israel, from the (Jordan) River to the (Mediterranean) Sea and back again.

Hamas’s project has far more support among Muslims and Arabs. A large survey of Arab nations last year found overwhelming support for the Palestinian cause and opposition to the establishment of diplomatic ties with Israel.

How overwhelming? 84 percent of respondents said their countries should not establish relations with Israel; only 8 percent thought they should.

By overwhelming majorities, Arab Muslims insist that their 5 million square miles of land be judenrein—free of all Jews. That's not going to change any time soon. The palestinians are Arab Muslims—a people whose name (palestinians) was created in the 1960s to help the Muslims achieve the destruction of Israel and make even Israel's measly 8,600 square miles free of all Jews.

Once you understand that harsh reality, the next steps become obvious, if in fact, difficult.